A few months ago, the New York Islanders were just coming off their first playoff series win in 23 years. They were 38 seconds from being up 2-1 against the Tampa Bay Lightning in the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Well, since the moment the Lightning tied it in the final seconds of Game 3, the Islanders have been a different team. They have become one of the worst teams in the league this year. Even though the Islanders have either been tied, or have had the lead in the 3rd period in 34 out of 39 games they have played, they have a record of 15-16-8 (38 points). What is the problem? Is it the coaching staff, the front office, or is it the players?
The coaching staff/front office is most likely the problem with this team. They do not use the players right. For example, they do not put the players in position where they can succeed. Andrew Ladd signed a 7 year deal this off-season to be a top 6 forward on this team. Egregiously, he has been used as a 4th liner. Most players coming to a new team and system have an adjustment period. Coach Jack Capuano did not give Ladd enough time to gain chemistry with John Tavares.
However, if you look at all the moves made during this off-season, GM Garth Snow still did not get his franchise player a superstar winger in Year #8! He had the chance to, but failed to pull the trigger. He decided to not offer a contract to Kyle Okposo, and let him walk. Snow offered Frans Nielsen a contract, but he took less money to play in Detroit. After signing Ladd, Snow also signed Jason Chimera to replace Matt Martin. Snow then signed P. A. Parenteau, but he was placed on waivers and claimed by New Jersey before the season began. What can help this team at the halfway point of the season?
A trade is needed to get this team going. The Islanders have 43 games remaining to start gaining ground, but time is dwindling and this team can not leave any points on the table. Anybody on this roster not named John Tavares(!), should be available for trade if a team comes calling. Enough of the hoarding of prospects and do something Snow. If he fails to make a move soon, he could be jobless along with the coaching staff. The time is now!
While the fans can not take the atrocious display night after night with this team, one seems to wonder; “Why has Snow not made a move yet?” Is he scared to make a move? Or is he going down with the sinking ship that he has built? Only time will tell. As for now, the fans can only hope this season takes a drastic turn for the better.